China and Pakistan expressed interest in discussing the extension of CPEC (China–Pakistan Economic Corridor) with Kabul authorities, Pakistani media reported.
The inclusion of Afghanistan in CPEC was discussed during the visit of Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan to Beijing, where he held talks with Xi Jinping, according to the Daily Times, a Pakistani newspaper.
The Chamber of Commerce and Investment said the inclusion of Afghanistan in CPEC would enhance regional trade.
“I think that Afghanistan can be part of this project (CPEC) and any other project that benefits the region and our country. This is in the interest of Afghanistan,” said Mohammad Younus Momand, acting head of Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
A joint statement issued after the meeting between Khan and Jinping said that the two sides discussed the importance of Gwadar port for regional trade.
“One of the benefits is that Afghanistan will have access to further investments. It will boost the Afghan trade credibility in the region, and we will witness further investment,” said Abdul Naseer Rishtia, an economist.
The traders expressed optimism over Afghanistan’s access to CPEC.
“CPEC is a very important project between Pakistan and China. If Afghanistan is included in this, it will benefit Afghanistan,” said Zalmai Azimi, a trader.
China has invested $40 billion to CPEC.
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